I am an documentary artist and educator who engages archiving, collaboration and participatory practices to challenge entrenched systems of political representation. My work emphasizes digital and material culture as tools and traces of personal and institutional interaction and often combines photography, video, text, sound, performance, intervention and non-traditional documentary materials.
Margot Herster at the former site of Bureau of Change in New Orleans. Photo by Travis Burke.
My interest in art as social and educational action is brought to life through interdisciplinary co-creation and artist-led organizing. From 2012 to 2018, I founded, directed and was the lead faculty of BUREAU of CHANGE in New Orleans. BUREAU was an alternative higher education project that activated collaborative digital media as a form of social practice.
I have held faculty appointments as Lecturer in photography and filmmaking at Kansas City Art Institute, full time faculty and Digital Art area head at Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge and visiting academic residencies at Columbia University, New York and University of California, Santa Cruz. I have presented lectures and workshops at Harvard Innovation Lab, NYU Cantor Film Center, University of Sussex, University of Texas, Society of Photographic Education Annual Conference, Hand-in-Glove (now Common Field Convening), FemTechNet, and Aicon Gallery, among others.
I exhibit at art venues, as well as non-gallery contexts in the form of public installation, web creations, and community-based actions. I have presented solo exhibitions at venues such as Contemporary Arts Center New Orleans; Sesnon Gallery at the University of California-Santa Cruz; EdLab at Columbia University, New York; Ashé Power House, New Orleans; FotoFest, Houston; and have shown in group exhibitions at Material Art Fair, Mexico City; Prospect New Orleans; Ogden Museum of Southern Art, New Orleans; Arthouse (now The Contemporary), Austin; Exit Art, New York; Galerie Mycroft, Paris; Galeria Cozhina at Universidade do Porto, Portugal; and Open Society Institute Moving Walls, New York.
Features and reviews of my work have appeared in International Herald Tribune, National Public Radio, Journal of War & Culture Studies, Al Jazeera English, San Francisco Chronicle, Houston Chronicle, Artnet, Rhizome, Brooklyn Rail, Glasstire, Pelican Bomb, …mightbegood, New York Magazine, New Orleans Art Review, and Amitava Kumar’s post-9/11 survey A Foreigner Carrying in the Crook of His Arm a Tiny Bomb published by Duke University Press. Open Society Institute, Fotofest International, Puffin Cultural Foundation, School of Visual Arts Alumni Association, Louisiana State University, University of Texas, and Kresge College at UCSC have supported my work through grants and commissions.